The Bismarck and Mandan McDonald’s have been giving out a lot more than Big Macs and McChicken’s this year.
The McDonald’s National Employee Scholarship Program recognizes and rewards their student employees. The Bismarck-Mandan McDonald’s have given out 58 scholarships to date and they don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
Bismarck McDonald’s Guest Service Department Manager JoEllen Robinson says, “I started back in 2012 and I have been with McDonald’s for a long time … really good company and offered me really great benefits here and they even offered me a scholarship to go to college.”
Robinson tells KX without the financial help of McDonalds she wouldn’t be where she is today.
“It means a lot because if I didn’t have that opportunity I probably would have struggled going through school to get my degree and plus they were so flexible with me as going to college as well and working around my hours,” says Robinson. “I don’t think other jobs would have been able to do that as well.”
The scholarship program requirements are quite simple.
Bismarck-Mandan McDonalds Operator Dennis Sotebeer says, “It’s very easy to qualify. If you started with me and if you worked for me for 90 days and average 15 hours a week you would qualify.”
Sotebeer tells KX his Bismarck-Mandan Mcdonalds lead both North Dakota and South Dakota for awarding the most scholarships, which go all the way up to $2,500. In just the past 3 years they have given out around $93-thousand.
“It’s just fabulous that we can offer this and keep kids going to school when sometimes they think there’s no choice to go to college,” says Sotebeer.
The local McDonald’s has even partnered with Bismarck State College to show employees just what opportunities their futures could hold.
McDonalds Hospitality Ambassador Libby Kasen says, “We meet with the crew. BSC is great and helps us out a lot. They help give information to the crew that may just not know they are interested or not. A lot of the times they will enroll while they are there and it’s probably people that were too nervous themselves or didn’t know how to go at it themselves so we actually go there and help them sign up.”
This spring they gave out 15 scholarships and this fall 25 more people will also be accepting them. The most they have ever awarded.
“I want them to feel like they have no obstacles and I want them to feel like we do care about their dreams because we do and we really care about their future and what that looks like and to be able to help them through this process is amazing,” says Kasen.
“Just want to say thank you to McDonald’s. and I’m just always lovin’ it here,” Robinson adds.
There is no age range to qualify and it doesn’t matter what field you want to study either. You can also keep reapplying for them as long as you work for the company.
Sotebeer says they are hiring now with a $10 per hour starting wage, great benefits, great fun, and great people.
For more information about the program, click here.